Willow Branches

$443.00 USD

10" x 20", oil on canvas painting. 2020.

They're selling willow branches at the corner store nearby! So I decided they just had to go into a still life.
I grew up in Russia in a climate similar to Toronto's, and willow branches popping up in buckets in kiosks and at bus stops were always the first hints that, incredibly, our northern spring might be coming after all. The Russian rhyme goes something like "March's a-knocking? don't take off warm stockings", i.e, curb your enthusiasm, it's still cold. Appropriately, willow flowers come with fur coats of their own. Dress for the weather!

So Russians have a sort of a tender affection for the willow flowers. In fact, in the Russian Orthodox tradition, Palm Sunday is Willow Sunday, owing to palm branches being a little hard to procure at that time of year (and generally). So the faithful come to church with flowering willow branches. .
Jesus is lucky he decided to enter Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. In Moscow, he'd be a little underdressed.

Unrelatedly, I've just now realized the flowers are called catkins in English, which is extremely interesting. The word apparently comes from the 16th century Dutch "katteken", kitten, and in a bunch of European languages these furry flowers are called kitties or kittens. "Kotiki" (Russian), chatons (French), Kätzchen (German), katjes (modern Dutch). In Hebrew, they're "rabbits" (close enough). How cool is that?


Also available as a limited edition 10" x 20" giclée print.

  • Limited edition of 200, signed and numbered by the artist. Comes with a certificate of authenticity.
  • Pigment ink on acid-free archival cotton paper (330 gsm), rated for 200 year fade resistance.
  • Read why I make my prints myself in-house and how.